Authors: Gracen Miller
A Hot Wired Novel
Rockin’ the Heart
The unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal. Criminal copyright infringement (including infringement without monetary gain) is investigated by the FBI and is punishable by up to 5 years in federal prison and a fine of $250,000.
Rockin’ the Heart
Copyright 2014 by Gracen Miller
Published by Gracen Miller
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Cover art by Andrea Kozari
Edited by Amanda Wimer
All rights reserved as permitted under the U.S. Copyright Act of 1976. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, transmitted in any form or by any means, or stored in a database or retrieval system, without the prior permission of the Author. For information regarding subsidiary rights, please contact the Publisher.
Manufactured in the United States of America
First Edition: January 201
The author acknowledges the copyrighted or trademarked status and trademark owners of the following wordmarks mentioned in this work of fiction: University of Alabama, Big Al, Maserati, Bugatti Veyron, Cherry Diet Coke, Prada
Salvatore Dali, Julliard, Tweeters
AmEx (American Express), Cliff notes, and any and all others that I might’ve missed.
To all my readers—thanks for your support, y’all are what keep me motivated and tapping out the beats of new storylines on my keyboard. This book is for y’all!
Thank you Kat and Nely for nagging me to write Rockin’ the Heart. Y’all rock!
Thanks to Kathryn Grimes for writing the lyrics to Rockin’ the Heart, a song featured in the book. You slayed these lyrics!!
Mark and Dom, y’all are the ballads that feed my soul.
If music nourishes the soul…
Loved by millions, but shunned by blood, Heath
“Fang” Fangor has led his band, Hot Wired, to the top while others have fallen by the wayside. He devoted his life to music, and from that devotion harvested a new family—his band mates and fans.
A man can desire nothing else…or can he?
Living in the shadow of her brother’s fame sucks! Sam Collins is desperate to have what she wants—a simple and uncomplicated life. She’s no stranger to scandals and how they work. Now that she’s inadvertently dragged Fang into the center of her latest gossip, could the scandal she created in her quest for freedom have gone too far?
Amid stardom the heart stages a new melody…
Fang has more fame and fortune than he will ever need, but none of that matters if he can’t have the woman of his dreams. Years have been wasted waiting for the right moment to approach the woman his heart desires above all others. There’s just one major problem...she’s his best friend’s sister. To have her, he will have to risk it all.
That might be responsible for Rockin the Heart!
Heath was a rock star god. The tight lines fanning outward from his silver eyes classified him as a pissed off rock star god.
Wanna tell me what you did this time to get the platinum treatment?” He indicated the jail cell, while ramming his fingers through his shaggy, jet-black hair.
Preferring to shrink into the shadows and avoid a confrontation with him,
Sam took a deep breath and rose from the bench. She stepped away from the metal seat to draw closer to the bars dividing them.
’d expected her brother, Jason—Jase—to ride to her rescue. Like always. Her foundation. Predictable. Dependable. Rattled by her sibling’s abandonment, she ogled the skull on Heath’s shirt, mortification overwhelming her.
was Jase’s replacement, then he’d been serious when he said ‘don’t call me the next time you’re arrested.’ She’d assumed he yelled that in anger. She was surprised he’d bothered to offer aid at all.
Gut hollow at her brother’s desertion, she cleared the ache out of her throat and asked,
“Can’t you just bail me out and we’ll forget this ever happened?”
Knowing he wouldn
’t go for that suggestion, Sam swallowed hard and shuffled her feet. Disappointing Jase was one thing, but letting Heath down was an entirely different matter. She’d crushed on the man since her tenth birthday when he’d given her a heart-shaped jewelry box. Didn’t matter he’d been too old for her at a mature fourteen. That infatuation hadn’t waned with age either, but only grown stronger. Not that he showed her a stitch of interest. To him, she was nothing more complicated than a kid sister.
digits curled around one of the bars. The tattoo lettering on his left knuckles fit his current disposition—
. On the other hand the letters H-O-T-W graced his knuckles. If read together, they spelled out the name of his band: Hot Wired.
Not this time, Samantha.”
She cringed. The only time he br
oke out her full name was when he was upset or disappointed with her.
You been drinking?”
You know I haven’t.” Just shy of twenty-one, in her world getting liquor wasn’t an issue. Neither was alcohol her preferred drug of choice.
She rolled her eyes, the question too stupid to warrant a response.
“This type of publicity is bad news for the band.” She’d heard that one before. None of her recklessness damaged Hot Wired’s career. Not that she sought to hinder their mega stardom. She wasn’t that selfish, she just struggled with controlling her impulses on occasion.
to help. Yelling spawned further rebellion.
Living under the
umbrella of the band’s fame grew tiresome. Her life should be her own, to live however she pleased. Weary of the media hounding her, she craved going back to a time when nobody knew her name. A normal life like when she’d been a kid.
n up on daydreams of the band making it to the big times. They won the lottery of recording deals, while Sam discovered stardom came at a high price. Along with that knowledge came the freebie of all lessons… fantasies were often better than reality. The last time she’d visited the mall without a trail of vipers eager to report her purchases she’d been fifteen.
as it too much to ask to have a date the world didn’t scrutinize? Even the loss of her virginity made headline news. That act should’ve come with the expectation of privacy. Thanks to the tabloids, Jase almost burst a blood vessel over that exploitation.
Once she’d picked her nose in public on purpose because a rag-reporter stalked her. Scratched her butt on another occasion. Gave them something to write. Those were the photographs and articles that gave her
incentive to laugh.
The only reason they’re not pressing charges is because of Jase.”
Thanks for the reminder.” Along with it came the reminder that her brother sent Heath instead of coming himself.
Despite the news-hounds
, she got out of a lot of shit thanks to her brother’s identity. This incident would be all over the rags and Internet before morning.
Hot Wired’s drummer’s sister is at it again!’
They’d go on to paint her wild and immoral comportment.
Have at it you fucks. Can’t hurt me any more
than you already have, but what about the band?
istance from Hot Wired would aid all of them. She’d get her peace of mind back, and they’d be devoid of the rebel-rouser in their group.
’d mentioned changing her last name and moving back to their Southern roots in the small Alabama town where she’d been born. Jase had gone bat-shit crazy at the suggestion and went on and on about how their parents would be rolling over in their grave at her abandoning the family name.
idea had been discarded. Swept under the rug like a dust bunny never to be spoken of again.
orn between two worlds, Sam was suffocating. Living with someone she couldn’t have in a world where she didn’t belong.
sank back down onto the bench and lay down on the uncomfortable metal, staring at the ceiling. “Go away, Heath. I’m not in the mood for a lecture.”
came from him, followed by a long pause. She anticipated he’d argue, but she focused on the water spot marring the tiled ceiling and prepared herself to fight back.
The sound of his retreating boots hitting concrete
echoed in the room. His exit surprised her, but relieved her too. Faced with his disappointment, she vowed
she’d terminate her criminal behavior.
She settled the
backside of her wrist against her forehead. She made that promise to herself often and botched the good intentions each time.
After a moment
, a new set of footsteps approached the cell. Even with her eyes closed she determined the intruder wasn’t Heath. In a room full of guests, she could identify his gait. Heath’s solid steps and long stride made for a unique swagger that bespoke his self-confidence. Celebrated his rocker status. Watching him walk compared to admiring art. Ogling his ass as he strode away… eye-gasms.
individual’s fast-paced walk reminded her of the peppered rounds of gunfire. She waited for the person to speak. The clink of metal striking metal and locks disengaging snagged her attention. She turned her head. The thirty-something deputy swung the cell-door open. “You’re free to go, Ms. Collins.”
Sam rolled off the bench and grinned at the officer as she sidled past him.
She’d bragged as they booked her that they wouldn’t hold her long and the charges wouldn’t stick.
In the lobby, Heath waited for her with his hands shoved in his jean
s pocket. His shaggy-butchered hair shadowed his eyes, doing a good job of hiding his expression, but the hard line of his jaw indicated he’d married his irritation. Lectures were sure to come.
Looking at him
, no one would guess he rocked the panties off chicks worldwide. With his long-sleeved, pull-over black shirt, sporting a white skull, his snug well-worn jeans and scuffed boots, he appeared as average as any hard American worker.
’s what I need to warm my cold bed
Average. Not my brother’s best friend and rock star god.
There was nothing average about
Heath Fangor—Fang to his band mates and the world. Neither would he seduce her. Not even as a one-time gig. The man and his fucked up principals… or maybe they were
fucked up principals because she couldn’t say for sure if she’d enter into a one-night-stand with him if he begged for one. She wanted more, and a one-nighter would be difficult to live with.
Thanks for the bail out,
.” She breezed past him with all intention of snubbing him, but he caught her arm. He held on tight, giving her a warning glare when she tried to jerk free.
Don’t be ungrateful, brat.” He towed her toward the elevator.
Thanks for the autograph, Fang!” She glanced back at the deputy who’d released her from the cell. He waved a piece of paper at them, grinning ear-to-ear.
Heath shoved her into the lift. The moment the doors shut, he slammed his palms down on either side of her head. Sam sucked in a breath, her eyes frozen on his
sexy-ass mouth. The bottom lip was slightly puffier than the top, nice and pink, and wet. He’d probably licked them, which explained the sheen. She had naughty fantasies with them as the star of the show navigating her body. The damage she suspected they could accomplish created a slippery situation in her panties.
tilt of his lips before he said, “Eyes on mine.”
refocused and locked onto his silver gaze. The accusations she saw there struck her like a blow to the gut. Looking away would be easier, but Heath had a way of holding her to a higher level with just a penetrating stare. His expectations were tall, and she despised him for having such grand aspirations for her.
What’s gotten into you? Base diving—”
“That was fun. You should try it.”
“—bar brawls, knifing chicks in Miami—”
Hey! I was found innocent of that allegation!”
Elevating his eyebrows, he called her statement a lie without uttering a word.
“—and now you’re adding
grand theft auto
to your long list of offenses.” She flinched at her newest criminal behavior. The way he said it made the charge sound so much worse than when she’d committed the act. Then again she’d been running on anger when the bitch tossed those keys at her. After she snagged the vehicle, the adrenaline rush butchered all common sense. “This rash behavior isn’t you.”
The reporters wanted news.
She’d considered it her civic duty to give it to them in spades.
Sam leaned her head against the wall and in a defiant move notched her chin higher.
“Maybe you don’t know me as well as you think, Fang.”
I know you, brat. Don’t forget all the times I bandaged your scraped knees and knuckles.” Solving a quarrel with words had never been her style, not even as a kid. “I was there when your parents died.”
A sad time she didn’t wish to remember, s
he swallowed hard and looked away.
Bastard. He hadn
’t needed to mention that incident. She’d been thirteen when her parents’ car flipped on the interstate. Hot Wired had just gotten started, had a few local gigs, but had already been making big waves on the LA street scene. Heath hadn’t thought twice about ditching the band’s obligations and heading home with Jase to bury her family. With her brother as heartbroken as her, it’d been Heath’s shoulder she’d cried on.
I know you. Talk to me.” Fingers calloused from plucking guitar strings touched her chin and turned her head to meet his scrutiny. The concern reflected in his steely gaze exposed how much he cared. Just not the way she wanted.
In that moment she hated Heath as much as she loved him. A knot the size of a fist tightened in her chest and burned her throat.
“I want to go home,” she managed in a scratchy voice. She ached for her Southern roots so badly it was like the ache she got from drinking too much sweet tea. Anything to get away from Heath and how she felt about him. “But every time I mention it, Jase freaks. Says he can’t lose me too.”